Sandia LabNews

STEM in the Sun brings science to students in summer programs across Albuquerque

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Students learn about surface tension by competing to see who can get the most drops of water on a penny.

Sandia is working with multiple City of Albuquerque community centers in June and July to offer STEM in the Sun to elementary and middle school age students attending summer programs. Volunteers lead the kids in STEM activities like making lava lamps and three bean salad, Math Bingo, Gluep and learning about optical illusion and surface tension with pennies, a dropper and ultraviolet beads. Sandia volunteers interact with the kids and offer additional education.

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Students experiment with solids and liquids as they make Gluep (slime) using glue, borax and food coloring. Students are given ideas for science activities they can do at home.
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Creating a lava lamp with vegetable oil, food coloring, water and Alka Seltzer tabs in the sun is fun! Students take home their experiments at the end of the program.

Community Relations Specialist Cheryl Garcia organized STEM in the Sun. “The children are so energized with these STEM activities, especially now that they’re able to do activities in person. I think the kids missed the interaction with each other and are having so much fun reconnecting this summer,” said Cheryl.

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The Spaghetti Marshmallow building challenge requires students to practice a design mindset and learn basic engineering principles.
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Making your very own lava lamp is fun! Students learn about water solubility in this fun chemistry experiment.